We all need a dream! For some people it is to get thin and healthy, for others it is to become rich. Advocare is a direct marketing company that could help you achieve all of that in one hit – that is if the claims in the advertising are to be believed. Advocare is a multi-level marketing (MLM) company focused firmly on weight loss and health. There is a wide range of products and customers are encouraged to sign up to the preferred customer plan and receive regular weight loss and fitness products every month. Alternatively, you will be encouraged to become a distributor yourself and sell Advocare to benefit from discounts.
Some people have linked Advocare to a cult and there has been criticism over some of the supplements and marketing practices. We take an in-depth look to find out more.
Advocare is a well-known US company with a wide range of products around weight loss and health. The company are well known in the USA and because there are thousands of distributors trying to sell their products via social media and through personal contact, it is possible you already know someone involved with the company. In addition there are numerous celebrity endorsers from the world of sport. One of the best-known Advocare ambassadors is New Orleans Saint’s player, Drew Bees.
Advocare was formed back in 1993 by ex-pro footballer Charles Ragus. As well as a background in football he had worked for an insurance company and as a distributor for Herbalife – probably the best-known MLM supplements company in the World.
Ragus died in 2001 but today the company seems to have gone from strength to strength. There is a large product range with over 90 different supplements and general nutritional products around weight loss and sports performance. The company use current sportspeople and athletes as ambassadors and sponsor US sporting events such as football competitions including the Texas Bowl in 2014. Advocare also sponsor NASCAR racing teams and competitions. Today the company CEO is Brian Connelly and the company is worth an estimated $400 million.
One of the key products is Advocare Spark an energy drink designed to boost your energy and brainpower. Other supplements and products include meal replacement drinks and various weight loss supplements.
We have covered many of these in previous reviews. They include the brand’s most popular products: Advocare Spark (https://www.dietpillswatchdog.com/advocare-spark/), Advocare Thermo Plus (https://www.dietpillswatchdog.com/advocare-thermoplus/) and Advocare Slim (https://www.dietpillswatchdog.com/advocare-slim/).
However, the flagship weight loss plan is the 24-Day Challenge.
The 24-Day Challenge is a weight loss programme that runs between certain dates so that participants can participate in group events and be supervised by the Advocare distributors. There are two phases to the challenge, both of which require that you buy different supplements.
The first phase is the Cleanse phase. This lasts from day 1 -10 and comprises three products: Advocare Spark, Fibre Dietary Cleanse and Herbal Cleanse. These products are supposed to gently cleanse your system making it ready for weight loss over the next 14 days. You also use Omega Plex, an omega-3 supplement.
The second part of the challenge is called the Max Phase. This also requires a range of supplements including MNS 3 – a metabolic health supplement, Advocare Spark and a wide range of so-called companion products.
All in all, there are around nine different products including a guide to the programme that you take over the 24-day period to help you through the challenge.
Because Advocare is a multi-level marketing company it is impossible to find out anything as ordinary as a price because you have to buy through a distributor. Prices will vary slightly but on average the 24-Day Challenge will cost around $300 so this method of weight loss is not cheap!
The 24-Day Challenge may work for some people but most of the genuine feedback we could find was negative. In addition, it can cause numerous side effects and reactions. Here are a few testimonials:
Spent close to $300 been on this programme 20 days religiously. Haven’t lost a pound or even 1/100 of an inch…
I started the 24-Day Challenge and immediately I knew it was wrong. It was like I was taking poison. I felt like my body was on fire and I had bees stinging me all over and my stomach always hurt and my bathroom habits were not very normal. I talked to the person that sold me this poison and they told me it was normal that my system was just detoxing itself…
The Advocare distributors have no medical knowledge or training. This sounds as if the customer was experiencing an allergic reaction to one of the many ingredients and should have been advised to stop the treatment and consult a doctor. Eventually, the customer did visit her doctor and was told to stop taking the supplements.
Starting Advocare with high hopes…I immediately began to feel ill. I sucked it up thinking it’s part of the challenge it will go away, etc. 12 days in I stay so nauseous, bloated, dizzy, and so much more. Any product that makes you feel this bad is not worth it in my opinion.
Multi-level marketing – or MLM – is a business model that relies on recruiting ordinary people as distributors to sell the products, rather than marketing the products through the shops.
This means that when you want to buy Advocare supplements, you need to find a distributor or sign up as a distributor yourself. There are hundreds of Advocare distributors on Facebook alone all looking for customers to buy supplements or people to sign up as fellow distributors. Advocare distributors are easy to find.
MLM is a legal business plan but it has attracted a lot of criticism because in many cases the company will make its profits by expanding the sales force and selling a business opportunity rather than products. When this happens, it has crossed the line into illegal pyramid selling.
See our investigation in MLM schemes:
Pyramid schemes are illegal and Advocare is a perfectly legal company, however, we feel that some of the distributors may be more active in recruitment than they will be in actually selling the products. This is because according to the company information there are five ways that you can earn with Advocare. However, only one of these ways is by actually selling products.
The rest of the ways that you earn involve your down line – or the other people you have personally signed up to Advocare. You earn commissions on THEIR sales plus you are rewarded for establishing a good network of sellers.
• Retail profits: earn up to 40% profits on every product you sell.
• Wholesale commissions.
• Sponsor other distributors and earn from 5 to 20% commissions on every product they sell.
• Earn income on your organisational volume (leadership bonuses).
• Earn additional bonuses on your complete organisation.
Qualify for fabulous incentives and a one-time Rookie Bonus!
According to the company information,
Advocare does not provide any compensation or payment for recruiting new distributors. Instead, compensation is based upon product sales, which varies based upon a number of factors, including how effectively distributors exercise key traits like diligence, leadership, time and effort in selling products. There is no guarantee of success or short cut to success.
We looked further into the figures, thanks to Advocate’s disclosure statement. After all, those additional bonuses and commissions sound as if they are going to be lucrative. The truth for most people was not quite as rosy.
The Annual Income Ranges chart provides the compensation earned in 2015 by distributors (commissions, overrides and leadership bonuses). This does not take any sales into consideration or any expenses generated by the business such as advertising, time or promotional material. This important point is often overlooked.
Most Advocare distributors, 71% of them are actually inactive and earn nothing. However looking at only active distributors and we can see the average income for the year:
• 31.86% of active distributors earned between $0.01 and $50.00
• A further 31.46% earned between $50.01 and $250.00
• This percentage drops drastically to just 12.16% when earning between $250 – $500.
• And again decreases a little too 9.91% for people earning between $500.01 and $1000.
• 7.93% of active Advocare distributors earned between $1,000.01 and $25,000.00
• 2.96% of active distributors earned between $2500.01 and $5,000.00
• 1.01% of active distributors made between $5,000 and $7,500,001
Most people make nowhere near a living wage by selling Advocare. Of course at the top of the pyramid 0:10% are making in excess of $2 million a year.
Becoming an Advocare distributor may help add some cash to your household but for most people, it will not be sufficient to really make a difference.
According to the advertising,
THE AVERAGE ANNUAL COMPENSATION PAID BY ADVOCARE TO ACTIVE DISTRIBUTORS IN 2015 WAS $1,586. An active distributor is anyone who earned a check from Advocare in 2015 (177,443 Distributors).
This average figure does not reflect the real earnings of most Advocare distributors. The average figure includes the tiny percentage at the top of the pyramid who is earning $2 million a year!
There has been some heart-breaking stories about people who have invested money, time and blood sweat and tears into Advocare and still have not made a success.
One man who was featured in an article with sports paper ESPN reported that he had taken out a loan […] and quit his government job, dropping $15,000 on products that he struggled to sell. He had hosted innumerable parties in his living room, handing out samples to reluctant attendees, and printed business cards with Brees’ face on them. He barely broke even – but he kept at it, convinced that someday he would be the one on Advocare’s stage.
“You’re always chasing the dream,” he says. “And it never comes.”
We have covered many of the Advocare supplements in previous reviews and have not been impressed by the quality of the supplements. In general they are extremely expensive and lack any real product information. In addition, we are concerned about the business structure of Advocare. Despite the claims of the company, it seems unlikely that you are going to make a living from selling Advocare. In our opinion, that ship sailed long ago when the company was set up and a few people got to head the top of the pyramid.
If you like Advocare supplements, you can get them for a discount price if you sign up as a distributor but, in our opinion, this is not a viable business plan for most people. Advocare is extremely close to a pyramid scheme and we would not advise anyone to get involved with either the supplements or the company.
Disclaimer: Our reviews and investigations are based on extensive research from the information publicly available to us and consumers at the time of first publishing the post. Information is based on our personal opinion and whilst we endeavour to ensure information is up-to-date, manufacturers do from time to time change their products and future research may disagree with our findings. If you feel any of the information is inaccurate, please contact us and we will review the information provided.